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4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow
Before I read this book all I really knew about Lou Reed was Walk On The Wild Side, Perfect Day and some other things. Now I feel like I missed out on one of the all-time greta rock artists. I'm used to Wall telling amazing stories even about bands I thought I knew eveything about but this just about tops the lot. The ECT treatments, the drugs (speed and heroin) the...
Published 7 months ago by Jamie Holt

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What a Stinker !!!!!
Having just finished this book,it's hard to see who it is aimed at. The seasoned Lou Fan would find nothing new here, While novices will find themselves confronted with a rush job, that is steeped in errors, and startling omissions. Do yourself a favour, listen to the Man's music and Judge for yourself. I read this dreadful thing so you don't have to...
Published 5 months ago by THE SAINT


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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What a Stinker !!!!!, 8 Feb 2014
By 
THE SAINT (LONDON, LONDON England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
Having just finished this book,it's hard to see who it is aimed at. The seasoned Lou Fan would find nothing new here, While novices will find themselves confronted with a rush job, that is steeped in errors, and startling omissions. Do yourself a favour, listen to the Man's music and Judge for yourself. I read this dreadful thing so you don't have to...
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Hasty and Cheesy, 16 Dec 2013
By 
MisterHobgoblin (Melbourne) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
Released only a few weeks after Lou Reed's sudden death, this biography is a crude mish-mash of information previously published in books written with much less haste. The last real wave of biographies was published shortly after the release and popular acclaim of the New York album. This saw Reed reinvent himself from an angry techno-punk into an important singer-songwriter offering contemporary social commentary. Of course, this was really what Reed had always done, but perhaps without sounding so serious about it. What then followed were a series of serious albums that never came close to receiving the same interest or respect as New York. And so the biographers moved elsewhere.

The trouble with this book is that it necessarily glosses over Reed's last years and focuses to a great extent on the sixties and seventies - a period that is already well known. Dammit, Reed wrote about it himself, in his songs.

If you want to find a real tribute to The Life, look for Genesis Publications's hideously expensive compilation of new and previously unseen photographs. Or go back to the original source material that Mick Wall has cribbed from. Or better still, listen to the albums. But please don't waste your money on this cheese that was released in haste to make a few Christmas quid out of Lou Reed's passing.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Desperately badly written book that miserably fails to do justice to Lou, 21 Mar 2014
By 
G. Coates (Surrey, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
This book is so badly written that words fail me. My student son bought it for me for Christmas knowing I'm a Lou Reed fan and I could weep that he wasted his cash on this tripe. When you find yourself screaming at the author 'the past participle of 's***' is 's***' or 's***ted'!!', you know you are reading drivel by someone who rushed out a book to cash in on Lou Reed's death without pausing for a moment to consider whether he was up to the task. Lou Reed was a poet. He deserves a better biography than this. Don't waste your money. If you want to know about Lou Reed's life you are better off googling past articles and spending your money on 'Transformer' and 'Coney Island Baby'
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too Little, too soon., 19 Jan 2014
By 
Stuart Mcleod "Word Lover" (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
This is a book that was written in too much of a hurry after the death of Lou Reed. This erratic but often brilliant artist deserves a more thorough and detailed account of his life and work. Less speed, more considered analysis was called for, but what we are given is a review of the life and work at breakneck speed. Surely, Reed was a biographer's dream study as his behaviour was so erratic and unpredictable and the very twists and turns of not only his private life but also his creative life were so surprising and inconsistent as to have been very manna from heaven for any would be biographer.
A pity because this highly intelligent, articulate, exasperating and controversial man needs a much more thorough study of how the life influenced the works and how important or otherwise he was to the world of modern music.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nowhere At All, 23 Dec 2013
By 
J. Highton "Jonboy" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Kindle Edition)
There is nothing really awful about this book and Mick Wall has an appreciation of most of Lou Reeds albums.
The problem is it really is a rush job and there is nothing new for anyone who has followed Lou Reeds career in any detail.
My advice would be to wait for the reissue and hopefully updated biography "Transformer" by Victor Bockris.
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4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow, 12 Dec 2013
This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
Before I read this book all I really knew about Lou Reed was Walk On The Wild Side, Perfect Day and some other things. Now I feel like I missed out on one of the all-time greta rock artists. I'm used to Wall telling amazing stories even about bands I thought I knew eveything about but this just about tops the lot. The ECT treatments, the drugs (speed and heroin) the Warhol years, the fact he lived with a man named Rachel most of all the music. Made me download a best of Reed and Velvet Underground album now can't sop listening buying more. His Sabbath book is prtobably the ebst rock biog I've ever reda but this is something else. Felt very moved by the end. Thanks to my partner for the early Xmas prezzie. Brilliant.
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5 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Monumental achievement, 16 Dec 2013
This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
The reviews of this book that lambast it for being written quickly totally miss the point. This is the most immersive experience I have had redaing a book since I last read someone like Burroughs - or any of the other people Mick Wall points out Lou Reed took inspiration from. I alreday know a great deal of the Reed/Velverts story, or I wouldn't have bought the book at the weekend. But this is SO much better than any other obit or tirbute I've read or seen since his death. Compared to that BBC4 thing on last night this is a masterpiece. Don't be taken in by the haters. This is a wonderfully written beautiful book about Lou Reed by a writer that clearly knows his stuff. And then some. Great subject great writing.
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4 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Far too lightweight......., 14 Dec 2013
By 
A Customer (liverpool. uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
If you are new to the music of Lou Reed or want to know some of the basics about his life then this book MIGHT do the job. If however you are a dedicated fan then you won't learn anything from this hastily released product.

When I tell you that the last 25 years of Lou's life (up to and including his untimely death) are covered by only 22 pages of print then you get the picture. (Having said that, the author himself recommends the far superior 1994 Victor Bockris book in his notes - so he is honest enough to admit it's no masterpiece)

The book does contain some nice photos (albeit a few of them are wrongly dated) but it really does not scratch the surface in covering it's subject in any detail.

So if you have a spare tenner and know nothing about Lou Reed, this book could be a place to start - but the rest of us will have to wait and hope for something far more comprehensive in the future.
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1 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, 3 Feb 2014
By 
Neil Cross - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lou Reed: The Life (Hardcover)
This is a superb account of the most misunderstood genius in rock. Lou Reed's fascinating life story is superbly told by Mick Wall, the undisputed doyen of contemporary rock writing.
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